Tag Archives: Performance Poetry

My Writing Life: News

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Yesterday I had no internet connection! This is an offline post I wrote:

Mr G and I went out on Sunday, for treats and garden/house shopping, after a lovely morning together, (on the last free Sunday I have for about 5 weeks) I popped onto the blog to leave a few posts… low and behold, the phone lines were down in my town… last time I remember this was after a storm many years ago… cannot believe it in the 21st Century, but there you go no internet.

I have decided to write all my posts offline ready to post and go out with Mr G for a lovely Steak meal and forget all about the world I could access… where some very important news was waiting for me in my inbox!

I am very excited about all the wonderful things happening to me right now in the world of writing.

Firstly, at the end of May I applied to Naked Lungs to take part in a pop up poetry event at the next Birmingham Literature Festival this year in October. It is a paid gig too! WOWZERS! Typically they have been inundated with creatives applying to be part of this half hour event, so we have been invited to meet/interview with them to discuss our proposals. blf logo

Unfortunately, it was a day I was working full time, I emailed with possible solutions to this problem, then late last week the agency rang and my days got changed about into 2 half days, freeing up potential time on Monday and Tuesday, I now need to decide which slot will be better for me, traffic-wise I guess Tuesday morning is the better option, just hope I can get to work on time! (I received confirmation today my interview is Tuesday morning.)

It is exciting and I hope it provides an opportunity.

Secondly, it is the 4th Worcester LitFest & Fringe starting at the end of this week and I am happy to announce my involvement.

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I have been asked to take part in the Pop Up Poets event on Sunday 22nd, it looks great fun.

WLF 42

I am also one of eight performers who will take to the stage at 42, have to get some dark poetry ready for that set. I think my recent poem about Martha Graham, written for the 52 project may be a suitable starting point. Maybe I will dust the Zombie poem off for another outing.

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The SpeakEasy Worcs LitFest special was originally invited guests only, I was one of the poets asked to do a 6 minute set. I am looking forward to both of these events and the headline acts.

I am busily involved in other open mic events and workshop/ performances right up until the end of June. Living the dream… 8 months in!

There are even more exciting events taking place in July.

I am performing on stage with The Poetry Army – Brainfruit, in my hometown and also hope to attend the pre-show workshop if Writing West Midlands can find cover for the Worcester group.  poetryarmy

I am attending the Born Free Anthology Book Launch, reading my poems from the book, along with others at various venues in Birmingham, starting with The Ort, where I was hoping to perform with Tim Scarborough again but he has other commitments for the rest of the Summer on Fridays and can’t manage it. I am performing a solo set instead. born free

Tim and I hadn’t actually seen each other for weeks as we were both performing individually for the last Mouth and Music. Where he performed an incredible set of poetry written about his late wife, poems I was honoured to help him edit. Not that they needed much work. We decided mm that we will collaborate for the next Mouth and Music on the theme of Summer. I look forward to squeezing some rehearsal time in!

I am going back to Acton Scott Farm to take part in a celebratory afternoon of Jean Atkin’s residency, including reading some ASF poetry from the workshop day. acton Where I also hope to finally buy my copy of DIP by Andrew Fusek Peters.

I am going to Stratford-Upon-Avon, where Jo Bell is the resident poet for the annual Literature Festival, she has organised a 52 picnic, where there will be so many of us hoping to perform we will be selected from a raffle to perform our 52 poems.

I have been so busy this year that I haven’t always managed to write my weekly poem in time to submit it to the 52 group, I have however, tried to catch up, I still have a few missing weeks and I really miss reading other people’s poetry because you learn so much, I hope to catch up with it this summer. Morning-Sun-mit

AND excitedly I share news that came after this was written and will have a post of its own. I got published!

 

Mouth & Music 28 – Collaboration with Tim Scarborough

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Mouth and Music 28 – Tuesday 13th May

 

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Tim Scarborough and I collaborated for the first time at Mouth and Music in April, since then we have worked together again for a Photogiraffe Exhibition Event – this was our 3rd collaboration and it came to be as we were all talking at the exhibition and Tim mentioned he was struggling with the theme. Heather told us to work together and we didn’t need much more convincing.

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It is great fun collaborating, I would encourage any artists to do it. It depends on who you pick, Tim and I are lucky, there seems to be lots of creative synchronicity and we don’t disagree in an overly dramatic, diva-ish way! Another reason the sets work well in performance is we REHEARSE – something I am guilty of not putting the time into my own act. Having said this the 4 hour rehearsal time we had before Tuesday was to co-write and edit our poems for the set. We created two new pieces and polished up a couple of individual poems with each other’s input, we had just 1 poem which used percussion and we blocked out where that would happen.

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So when we took to the stage that the very 1st time we had performed these poems together. We managed to overcome a slightly shaky start and silence and a groan* are still a reaction! *The endline of Tim’s poem was humorous but in a lavatorial way, to make the audience feel better, I announced that we would take their silence and groan and raise them. This worked – and the set/material got stronger.

We finished with two funny poems which we thoroughly enjoyed performing. The Hair That Wouldn’t Stop and Moustache Poem with Fact Bombs (written with Jonny Fluffypunk in mind) who sports some great face hair stylizer of his own.

We took a medley of our sets on the road to Birmingham last Friday and included these two hairy poems in our set list. They were even better the 2nd time, but that’s another post!

moustaches

© 2014 brightlearning.com

 

I have since read messages from Jonny Fluffypunk (who is an amazing stand up performance poet) requesting space in Bristol to help him spend the day rehearsing! If you are in Bristol, let me know if you have space to accommodate a very lively and lovely poet rehearse during the school day! I definitely need to free up time to practise sets with more than a quick read through with a stopwatch!

Mouth and Music is always a great night, entertaining, relaxed and oozing with talent. It was good to see Paul Francis made it across from Much Wenlock (it isn’t just me who heads miles away for gigs), it was good to have time to talk to him and other artists. There were lots of new to this event open mic-ers too, which is always good to see/hear.

I really enjoyed the headline acts – Four Tart Harmony, managed with just 3 voices and were incredible, I had experienced a bit of a dippy down day and they really raised my spirits. I have their business cards and wouldn’t hesitate to book them for any parties in the future – should I be planning any.

Jonny, of course was extremely funny, I didn’t mean to heckle him, it just came out – hadn’t realised he wasn’t asking a question, he hadn’t even finished his sentence. I got to chat to him afterwards, he remembered me from the Worcester SpeakEasy gig (flattered) and he didn’t believe we had written the moustache poem as homage to him, his turn to be flattered.

mm jfp   All in all a great night! So good Tim nearly forgot to take his drum home (which may have confused people as we didn’t use it) – he had gone prepared to work alongside another open mic musician, Mr Scarborough, much in demand.

 

Next month’s theme is adjectives…. pretty much anything then, I will still write something specifically for it, currently working on a poem/tribute for a friend who is leaving the country next week.

 

RELATED LINKS:

Moustaches in May Heather Wastie’s official review on the M&M Blog.

SpeakEasy with A. F Harrold

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Speakeasy was amazing, I was very tired by the time I got across to Worcester after working two jobs, I was hoping to get there in time for signing up to the open mic (4 free slots of 2 minutes) I didn’t manage it and they had put the parking up! I paid my entry and had a chance to mingle and catch up with everyone I knew, great to see new faces in the audience as well as getting up to the mic, this is one of my favourite spoken word nights and I missed it last month to go to the meeting with Writing West Midlands.

I was delighted to see that Matt Windle was performing and enjoyed his short set. It was great to watch new -to – us acts and also end up with 2 nice surprises. They managed to get through the first half quicker than normal. Which meant myself and Io had a chance to perform.

Hurrah! Unfortunately I hadn’t had time to set or rehearse, I just grabbed a bag of poems and when I was told there was no space, I didn’t bother looking at them, so on the spot, Fergus had to fill time whilst I went through my plastic file.

I wasn’t 100% happy with my performance but the feedback was good and the parts I had been unsure of no-one else seemed to notice.

The second surprise – I won the raffle! I chose Wreck this Journal, a great book by Penguin that I can fill in myself!

A great 2nd half and the headline A.F Harrold, I knew about him but had never seen him perform, very entertaining!

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Kidderminster Creatives Poetry Slam – UPDATED

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Sunday night saw the May Bank Holiday Inaugural Poetry Slam hosted by Kidderminster Creatives at the Boars Head Gallery (BHG) – I was so pumped when I got home, this is why I want to be up to date with blog posts and write in real time! To be fair I was still excited when I woke up on Monday!

KC Poetry Slam 4th May

It was my 1st ever slam, Fergus asked me to take part. I am not real a slam poet, my material is not that click, beat variety…. After this experience I am tempted to follow the winners lead and write just 1 slam poem! The lovely thing about this slam was that everybody got a prize. 13 poets took part.

Those bowing out (like me) in the 1st round took a 2nd hand poetry book, the 2nd round, shiny new books & the winner a gold jelly man trophy, a book & £50! 3 poets in a round – apart from mine that had 4… There were 3 poet laureates and several slam champions for us Slam virgins to pitch against.

It was great fun & entertaining. I was happy with my 2nd hand copy of Ted Hughes, Birthday Letters and having the freedom to drink and be entertained as 5 (highest scoring runner up + winning poet from each group) became 2, Math Jones and Maggie Doyle went through… to entertain us with a brilliant final.

KC SLAM

It was a superb, hyper night!

 

Maggie Doyle WON!

KC SLAM 2 Congratulations Maggie, who can now be seeing taking Oscar to many events to be photographed! She was up against tough contestants and many who had won slams before. And has written a tongue in cheek beat poem since last weekend, influenced by some of the more ‘beat’ participants!

http://kidderminster-creatives.org.uk/

 

Poetry for Tea – Hit The Ode – Thursday 17th April

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Hit the Ode

The guest list this week was phenomenal – the event is run by Bodhan Piasecki, who works as the west Midlands Programme Co-ordinator for Apples & Snakes and is a lively. energetic and entertaining host. The formula is 6 open mic spots (usually pre-booked) and then 3 headliners – guest poets, a local, national and international act.

This month; hit 1

Hit the Ode is a spoken word poetry night which brings the most exciting poets from the region, the country, and the world to the heart of Birmingham. Each edition features three guest acts: one from the North West, one from elsewhere in the UK, and one international guest. 

We have poems. Poems which crunch when you bite into them; poems you’ve been meaning to call for ages; poems buzzing like wires strung between pylons.

Good poems. Come and get them.

FEATURING:

SHANE KOYCZAN
Winner of the US Slam Poetry Championship and the Canadian Spoken Word Olympics, Koyczan is truly an extraordinary talent that has blown the dust off of the designation “poet”. Engaging and authentic in attitude, Koyczan emerges in a new wave of 21st century poetry that dares to belong to the people and speak directly to them in their own voice.

JASMINE COORAY
Jasmine Ann Cooray is a poet and spoken word artist and workshop facilitator from London, of British and Sri Lankan heritage. She is known for vivid imagery, attention to detail and storytelling through personal experience. Jasmine has just returned from her stint as International Writer in Residence at The National University of Singapore.

JODI ANN BICKLEY
One of Brum’s best loved authors, poet and best-selling author of One Million Lovely Letters Jodi Ann Bickley returns to Hit the Ode for her very first full set. It’s high time: since her victory at the 2009 Roundhouse slam, Jodi has performed all over the UK, including festivals such as Bestival and Glastonbury. She was a speaker at TEDxBrum in 2013.

 

Many people wanted the open mic slots for the honour of performing in front of Shane. I asked back in March but was already too late. I was put on the reserve list. I hadn’t given this a thought all day. I got there in time to mingle and chat to poets I haven’t seen in a while and some that were at PFL as well, then took my seat (which was a bit of luck) I think there were 80 people there it was standing room only!

 

A Surprise Performance!

do415com open mic Bohdan came up and told me there had been a no-show and that he was giving the slot to me. I accepted eagerly and then went into shock! The event was about to start and I hadn’t prepared anything, fortunately in my hurry to leave for the train I had grabbed some extra poems, sorted my PFL poems out on the train, then resorted them at the library – when I arrived I had forgotten what it was I was going to perform!

I frantically looked through and chose 3 suitable poems.

All the open mics were brilliant and I think I was the only one with words on the stage – it made me feel better when all 3 headline acts (including Shane) used screens, books and prompt notes to read some of their sets from. They like me didn’t just stand there and read – it is a glance down for feeder lines performance.

I still like to take a new set to every show – 20+% of the audience has usually been to other events – there are some poems – much as I love them – that I have heard every month so far this year more or less, although this is the done thing professionally – of course it is – who wants to learn 100 poems! I go to so many events that on occasion I have already seen the main act elsewhere, they usually throw in 1 or 2 different poems but the rest of their 20 minutes is the same show. I like to mix it up and because of this still only know a couple by heart!

Despite having the paper (which if you remember I REALLY needed) inkspill open mind last time I was lucky enough to perform at Hit the Ode (back in Feb) I lost my focus and the already rehearsed and perfected poems slipped out of my head and I died on stage, had to jump off, empty my bag (literally tipped it upside down) and then jump back on the mic and perform from the page!

This time I performed well and lots of people spoke to me about my poems. One of which I wrote when I was 17. (It was published – I didn’t tell many people that!)

 

Main Acts

JODI ANN BICKLEY – was brilliant! I hadn’t realised it was her 1st long performance – it was fabulous, funny, heart wrenchingly truthful and we all wanted at least another 20 minutes, she informed us that we wouldn’t want to see her turn, which usually happens around the 4th poem, one to watch out for, she was great!

JASMINE COORAY – Owned the stage, composed and full of life’s experiences she wrote about her life, memories, people and brought them all to life on the stage in front of us. A stunning set and someone I could also have spent the whole night listening to. She was selling some hand-made pamphlets (between publications) and I regret that I didn’t have enough spare cash after the afternoon in Birmingham to buy one.

SHANE KOYCZAN – A M A Z I N G! And lacks ego – the crowd went wild and his 1st words were ‘I didn’t save anyone!’ A true heroes welcome, a true hero, but a humble man. He made me feel like we were right there alongside him, all equal – despite the standing ovation at the end and ENCORE, 2 things I have NEVER witnessed at a poetry night – including Hit the Ode! WOW! EVERYONE! Even the people lucky enough to have chairs! It was a powerful, energetic performance, full of raw emotion, life stories and some jokes about numbers that we will never forget! If there were any men preparing best man speeches in the room then Shane set would be a dream! It is beyond words really! Incredible. Loved it! Go on, go…. You Tube!

 

Post Gig

After the gig I was able to talk to people again and I went to meet Shane who performed an amazingly, open, emotive, energetic set, how he remembers all his words I don’t know. He signed my every-writer-should-have-one-handbag-notebook, which is currently fairly empty as I have just finished the one I used when this poetry mission started, last October. I have a lovely message now to inspire me every time I open the book.  beach

After an adrenalin packed day I headed home by train and car and resisted the temptation to stay up all night and dance around in happy circles! (Although my performance photos are not something I enjoy looking at or sharing at the moment, I think ZUMBA might be the best post-gig adrenaline plan!)

 

LINKS

Shane Koyczan  (language content)

Jasmine Cooray

Jodi Ann Bickley

Mouth & Music – What a Great Night!

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1441315_10151891604167737_769844637_n This month’s theme was all about encouraging collaboration, working in pairs, approaching someone you have never worked with before… the initial thought -after it was announced by Heather in March, was DREAD!

Finding the time was an issue…. would anyone agree to partner me…… all my insecurities came out to play and I buried my head in the sand for a few days…. then when I decided to grab the opportunity, I gave it a few more ‘be cool’ days, in case anyone emailed me – or so as not to pounce and appear too eager. In my mind I imagined everyone sending out frantic emails and pairing up and it would be like picking a team in PE*!

* Except this never happened to me as I played hockey, County Netball and was a top 8 long distance runner back in the day (when I was fit and danced) – I was usually picked around the middle of the team creations and so never felt too bad….

Thing was with Mouth & Music, when it was announced I knew exactly who I wanted to work with.

Tim Scarborough is a very talented Percussionist amongst other things – including a poet! A few months ago he treated us all to some music on his mood drum … it was beautiful he transported the whole room into a place of quiet, meditative thought and I for one wanted the sound to NEVER end! As soon as I heard it – I knew of the perfect poem and thought about asking him and then never gave it another thought – until in March this collaboration was mentioned.

Also as an aside for no reason other than force of habit the people I know all sit on the right and the others sit on the left – I wanted to bridge that gap!

I sent Tim an email, fully expecting him to not agree – to my surprise and delight he agreed.

Turns out not many people rose to the challenge of a duet. And we really did – organising 3 rehearsal/writing mornings. (1 of which I had to cancel to work)… 2 rehearsals and 2 hours typing is more prep than I have ever put in – and I got really nervous about performing again – as I didn’t want to let Tim down (which nearly happened when my phone screen blanked out on a cue line)!

Our rehearsals were great, I have not collaborated with other artists since my time involved in the performance circuit and theatre, back in the 90’s. It is something I miss…. especially with the solitude of writing – something I’ve had to get used to.

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Rehearsal 1: we tried the mood drum and my Rain Watch poem – played around with it, recorded, re-read and rehearsed. It was instantly fine and right and Tim commented tonight that he wished he’d come to it cold, having never heard the poem and improvised (maybe next time Tim)!

Tim also talked about his Social SATNAV idea and we both worked on and shared poems from our gender perspective.

The 2nd rehearsal was a fortnight later – I had managed to work and rewrite my poem a few times and needed some help with the 2nd voice, we worked on this re-reading and getting it right. Then we turned to Tim’s notebook and came up with the idea of the inner monologue – and the inner, inner monologue – the socially unacceptable bit that we switch off for his original SatNav poem.

It was great fun writing the voice and using words I wouldn’t normally feature, including some swearing. This collaboration gave me the opportunity to write pieces in a new voice.

We also practised Rain Watch. So by the end of our collaboration – we had 2 new dual speaking performance poems and a re-emergence of one of my poems.

People loved our set, rehearsing paid off. It was lovely to hear people had enjoyed it and I cannot begin to express how brilliant it felt to share the stage.

The other performers brave enough to collaborate and work on material were of course our delectable hosts – Sarah Tamar & Heather Wastie, they even introduced props and entertained us as always.

Andrew Owens (host of Drummonds 42) and Michelle Crosbie (headliner at Lichfield Poetry Alight) treated us to a dualogue, Cathy & Alex – a story Andrew wrote, told in 2 voices. They were very brave (they both sang) and were first up. It was great.

Despite Heather inviting people to perform solo, the theme had put many regulars off and we were all a little worried about being thin on the ground (it would have definitely been warmer with more bodies) – we needn’t have worried -Mike Alma and Mogs shared poetry in touching and funny solo performances and we were treated to some music and audience participation with the sandwich love song.  It was a great night with electrifying atmosphere and everyone enjoyed it!

MM April

I was looking forward to the Headline poets, I have had the pleasure of hearing both David Calcutt (at Poetry Bites) and Nadia Kingsley (Shrewsbury Coffee House) before, never together. It was very enjoyable and they had books to sell ‘Road Kill’ was the one used for the performance, I shall look forward to an Easter Holiday read fest! AND this set inspired a seed of an idea between myself and fellow poet Claire Walker.

And as for Bleeding Hearts – what words can be used (I had better find some) richly political, rock meets folk at high speed and meshes as one and once again a chance for audience participation!

To top the whole night off … Mr Mike Alma, who has been entertained by Marie-Celeste epic journey tales since before the New Year gave me a SATNAV! Wow! Dreams came true. I may be able to find gigs in the future – no longer do I have to use AA Route finder (other route searches are available) – which I am sorry to say, lies a lot and leaves much of the important bits of the journey out – and gives journey durations 50% less than they are generally – causing me (if I find the gig at all) to be late! open road

Now I will have to come up with ever-more creative excuses like the battery went flat, I ignored the SATNAV or the dog ate my homework…. for being late or lost.

BIG THANKS Mike 🙂 thank-you-typewriter

 

And just to finish this post – here is a lovely review from Mouth and Music;

It has not been customary to mention individual open mic performers in post-gig write-ups, but here’s the exception: Huge thanks to Andrew Owens and Michelle Crosbie for collaborating on a story by Andrew and, even huger thanks to Nina Lewis and Tim Scarborough who not only collaborated but also wrote some great new material. Thanks also to the regular open mic-ers who came along to listen and/or perform solo.

Featured spoken word artists, David Calcutt and Nadia Kingsley showed how page poetry should be performed. Quality work delivered with clarity and humour. Featured musicians, Bleeding Hearts were big, bold, entertaining and political. We sang along and stamped our feet, which also helped us get warm! It was brass (as they say up north where it’s even colder) but regulars are getting used to coming prepared for any temperature. It’s got to be warmer in May! See you then, when we’ll be rebranding, thanks to Gel Newey (Bleeding Hearts bass player) as Gob and Racket 🙂

I am still buzzing nearly 24 hours later! 😉

My Writing Day Part 1

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inkspill just writeMy day of writing is going well – I am using my self disciplined invisible time-table! Today is a National Teacher Strike and my school is closed. I won’t get paid for supply, I havent had to do any – I welcome this day to write and catch up with my life (as a writer!), like I mentioned in a social media status – on one hand I don’t make any money today and on the other hand, well the other hand is the one I write with!

Mr G made sure I was up early – he forgot I wasn’t working today. After the post event adrenalin of last night – I went to Poetry Bites, an evening of fantastic poetry booked and hosted by Jacqui Rowe (Editor Flarestack Publishing) a group of us went to support Sarah James, who was one of the booked poets, I then found out you could book a floor spot and couldn’t resist sharing a couple of poems. It was a fantastic night and of course when I came home I found myself wide awake to begin with, it was about 1a.m when I rolled into bed, so I could have done with a bit of a lie in and my pink eyes tell that story!

I made a coffee, grabbed the 3 issues of my writing magazine that I am still attempting to find time to read and headed back off to bed to do my Admin.

3 hours later, I have emerged (still in PJs) but now online and upright. I had a diary full of writing tasks and now I have an A4 to do list in order and am about to hit the ground running with an edit and final re-write of the poems written especially for tonight’s 3rd Anniversary of Drummonds 42. The theme is Zombies and although I don’t do horror, I have enjoyed attending 42 each month since Halloween and sharing the darker thoughts of my mind which would never be shared in public without events like this. Tonight though – it is special (I feel I should be baking cakes, but I am definitely far too busy writing to do that or clean the kitchen (Mr G)…) in honour of the anniversary I am using the theme and have managed to write 2 post apocalyptic zombie poems… I enjoyed the challenge.

My writing diary, which has been littered with weekly post-it notes has now got extra pages paper-notestaped in and is looking fairly full until the summer. I have 8 writing tasks today – I think that is OVER AMBITIOUS to say in the least especially as I have to make it to the library before closing to collect my Art Network Poetry Display (which came down last week) and then get out to the 42 Gig…

My 1st writing task before editing the Zombie poems is to write a short Bio – for the Born Free Anthology – I struggle with these as I never know what to put and can feel my ego smugly pushing me out the way to get to the keyboard. Elaine needs it a.s.a.p so I promised her it would be my 1st online job of the day.

Better get some work done now then, the sun is shining – I am happy, have my 2nd coffee of the day – had I been working I would still be without a break and over 3 hours in! Bliss. I cannot wait for the flat sale to go through so I can afford at least a few of these writing days a month.

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ConFab Cabaret – Celebrate their 1st Birthday! (Weds 19th March)

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When I wrote this post https://awritersfountain.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/an-afternoon-of-editing-haikus-rehearsing/ on Wednesday I didn’t expect to spend so long writing Haikus. I wrote 21 Haikus for What’s the Agenda? Before getting ready for Confab Cabaret, I didn’t have time to rehearse but did a quick run through and it was one of my favourite poems. I know it quite well. 1 scottish poet

Confab Cabaret was conceived by Amy Rainbow, Catherine Crosswell and Adrian Mealing. It was named after the original venue- ReCon, which sadly closed down at the beginning of the year. Not only have Amy and Catherine kept up the monthly evening of Open Mic and booked performances, they have faced the challenge of finding new venues each month.

Last month we were in a plush function room in a hotel and this month we were in Olivers, a very red bar, that usually shows sports and had accepted us creatives piling in instead.

Now I am a firm believer that part of the fun and energy of these events I go to comes from the Compere/ MC/ organisers, there is an awful lot of ‘beside scenes’ work that goes on and for Amy, Catherine and Richard the transformation begins as soon as they reach the venue- tealights on tables, the Poet-Tree*, the silliest raffle prizes all have to be displayed, the PA system and everything else besides. xmas 1 tealights

I was really looking forward to this event, as I had such a great night in February and the headline acts were the Decadent Divas and Men in General. Over the past 10 months I have met all the Divas and seen them perform individually. And Men in General are a talented five-piece acapella group, definitely worth seeing if you have a chance – look out for gigs in the midlands. Hereford is there next stop, I believe.

Catherine had baked cakes, Myfanwy had made vegan flapjacks and the party was in the full swing from the get go.

Spoz – there very first headliner was there too and treated us all to a Jeremy Clarkson poem!

Myfawny did Foxpops – the audience all get a piece of paper to write 1 -2 lines on and she has the task of sellotaping it all together and making a poem, which she then bravely takes to the stage and reads.

Confab 1

You can read the audience poem here (Warning – a bit risky in places) the theme was parties.

confab I had a great night and shared a poem in one of the #prepare to share slots. People seemed to like it. And thanks to Catherine’s generosity I also got to choose a silliest raffle prize. A book of quotations I thought I might use as prompts for writing new poetry.

This was the first of 3 nights of poetry events and a great way to start.

* Which in Oliver’s was too tall, so it became a Poetry Bush!

Quick Mini-Update! The Past 3 Days of Poetry Me.

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I plan to write separate posts over the weekend for the events of the past 3 days… for now – having just come home from the MAC (Midlands Art Centre) I am buzzing and too excited to write blog posts!
Surging energy….
news in brief….

WEDS
Wrote 21 Haikus on Hikikomori for What’s the Agenda, a project Hayley Frances is producing, isolation in a digital world, this weekend at The MAC.
Then I went to CONFAB CABARET which was a superb night. I performed and my poem went down well.
I finally got to see the Decadent Divas and Men in General would have blown me off my chair, had I been sitting on one. Fortunately the settee was up against a very solid wall!
I came away from the silliest raffle with a silly prize and there was free CAKE!

Then Thursday I managed to HIT THE ODE and support my friend Andrea Shorrick in her new SWINGERELLA persona, as well as catching 3 amazing headliners, chatting to many poets and buying a new pamphlet of poetry!
I got in on a high and was up until 2 a.m….

Tonight I went to the MAC to see The Quiet Compere a show created by Sarah Dixon across the country. I know 8/10 poets and have been lucky enough to perform at the same events and open mics as 8 of them in the past 6 months too.
It was a great mix and I discovered 2 new, very talented poets.
My Worcester poetry friends blended with my Birmingham Poetry Friends and it was a bit weird for me cross mingling -torn, I wanted to be a part of everyone’s conversations… I am glad they had the opportunity to meet and hear the talent that I discovered at the very start of my journey back in September!
Homegrown talent!

I have come home and written 2 new poems for 42 next week. A themed birthday edition.

best sarah wilkinson

An Afternoon of Editing Haikus & Rehearsing

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I have managed to make it home in good time, another afternoon of assessments which were sprung on me…. so not an easy time. I am now finalising the Haikus for submitting to MAC and then I will be getting ready for a night out in Malvern at Confab Cabaret!

Amy and elgar

© Copyright 2014 Amy Rainbow

I am excited as I finally get to watch the Decadent Divas – I know them all now, having met Maggie Doyle first (last Spring on the Custard Factory children’s writing course) and Charlie Jordan – who I met in the Autumn at the Birmingham Literature Festival and then Laura Yates – who I saw perform at Mouth & Music and finally Lorna Meehan – who shares a Jim Morrison passion with me and has headlined and performed at several events I have performed at since. Tonight I get to see the ensemble!

amy elgar

© Copyright 2014 Amy Rainbow

I am also hoping to bag one of the 2minute open mic slots and share a poem with everyone. There was a really fantastic turn out last time, about 60 people, a lot more than I am used to performing in front of, a great atmosphere and I had a wonderful evening.

Fingers crossed for more of the same! confab

The other headline act is Men in General and it is Confab’s 1st birthday party to boot. happy bday Cakes have been baked! Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm